A Music Lover’s Guide To The City Of Angels
A Music Lover’s Guide To The City Of Angels
When people think of Los Angeles, they usually conjure up images of the Hollywood sign and influencers driving stunning cars up and down Sunset Boulevard.
While this is a part of LA culture, there's more to Los Angeles than just Hollywood, warm weather and beautiful scenery.
The city is also a mighty player in the music industry and has been for many decades. The city's eclectic music scene has paved the way for famous record labels such as Capitol Records, which made the careers of legendary musicians including the Beatles, ABBA, Katy Perry and many others.
As this varied list of artists shows, Los Angeles has historically been a diverse hub for all types of music creators and fans.
This fact remains true today. Whether you love hip hop or jazz, rock and roll or country, there's something for every fan to enjoy in LA.
Pirate adores Los Angeles and is proud to be a part of its modern music scene by offering our LA recording studios and LA rehearsal spaces to residents and visitors.
Keep reading, and we'll explore the history of music in Los Angeles and how you can enjoy music events and entertainment venues in this gloriously beautiful city.
A Brief History Of The LA Music Scene
Los Angeles is commonly known as LA or the City of Angels. It's the largest city in the state of California and amongst the most densely populated in North America.
The city has a long history of creating amazing songs and launching phenomenal artists, thanks to its beautiful setting and diverse population.
Initially founded by a Spanish governor in 1781, LA was a part of Mexico for over 20 years following the Mexican War Of Independence.
In 1847 the city became a part of the United States, and it has remained that way ever since. Still, the city has retained its links to Latin culture.
The city also welcomed a flourishing African American music scene during the 1920s and 30s, as jazz became a popular style of music.
When Chuck Berry spearheaded the rise of Rock and Roll in the 1950s, he spent time in the region and often toured the city, bringing the genre into the heart of LA.
LA soon became a hub for rock and roll musicians, and today it contains many landmarks of the music genre.
The formation of the world-renowned record label Capitol Records in 1942 cemented LA's reputation as a hub for popular music. The company created a headquarters in the city, and many other popular record labels such as A&M Records established bases in Los Angeles.
Alongside the rise of music labels in the city, Los Angeles and Hollywood became popular locations for movies, which gave rise to even greater production of songs in the city.
Artists such as Charlie Chapman created their own music for their films, which gave rise to more outstanding music production in LA.
Chapman built a recording studio on La Brea Avenue, which became the A&M Records base and is now the Jim Henson Recording Studio.
From rock to jazz, then later punk rock and metal, as well as rap, almost every genre of music has flourished in LA.
Many famous musicians were born in Los Angeles, and even more got their start in the city through its record labels, famous live music venues and concert venues.
Songs have been written about this glorious and renowned city, and some of the world's most significant live music events, such as festivals and seminal gigs, were hosted in LA over the decades.
Today, there are plenty of Los Angeles music tours, so visitors and locals alike can learn more about the city's illustrious history of influencing incredible music and how it has shaped the industry.
The Best Live Music Venues In LA
In 2021, visitors to LA can check out a wide range of live music events. Many renowned bands and artists pick Los Angeles as a stop on their world tour, and they have a wide array of venues to choose from when picking a suitable spot.
Below is a list of some of the best live music events in LA that you can visit:
- The Hollywood Bowl: A gorgeous outdoor entertainment venue, the Hollywood Bowl was established in the 1920s and patronized by many renowned groups, including the LA Philharmonic. Today, the Hollywood Bowl is perfect for watching incredible live shows from your favorite artists or exciting new musicians.
- The Greek Theatre: Made a household name thanks to the 2010 comedy film Get Him To The Greek, the Greek Theatre is a glorious open-air venue that can seat 6000 revelers. The theatre offers a unique experience and creates an intimate feel despite the vast size of the venue.
- The Walt Disney Concert Hall: The Walt Disney Concert Hall is part of the LA Music Center in the heart of LA’s downtown district. Built after Walt Disney's death, this impressive part of his legacy is now a live music venue that plays host to regular free tours. It also welcomes spectators to shows from a range of artists who love the pristine acoustics and illustrious architecture of the venue, which was designed by Frank Gehry.
- The El Rey Theatre: A stunning art deco building, the El Rey is a former cinema that now hosts intimate live performances. It has a neon sign that's almost as famous as the Hollywood letters, and the venue is renowned for hosting rock and pop shows.
- The Troubadour: If you're looking for a small bar-type venue, then the Troubadour could be the perfect choice for you. It's a nightclub that has launched the careers of a range of comedians and musicians throughout its history, including Richard Pryor, Nina Simone, Neil Young, Billy Joel and many others.
- The Sayers Club: An intimate and stylish club on Wilcox Avenue, the Sayers Club is great for visitors to Los Angeles who want to enjoy a delicious cocktail and a delicious meal as well as an unforgettable show.
- The LA Memorial Coliseum: An expansive outdoor sports stadium, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum has played host to many renowned performers, including Bruce Springsteen and Black Sabbath, as well as being the home of the Los Angeles Rams American football team.
- Royce Hall: Part of the campus of the University of California, Royce Hall is a majestic building with a stunning auditorium that can seat up to 1800 spectators. While the venue's primary attraction for performers is its 6,600-pipe organ, many musicians and orchestras have played at the Hall over the years.
Dodger Stadium: Another outdoor sports attraction, Dodger Stadium is also able to host a range of entertainment programs. The major league baseball team, the LA Dodgers, play at the stadium, and many major pop stars have played for the team in the past, including the famous performance by Elton John.
- Banc of California Stadium: For soccer fans, Banc of California Stadium is a historic venue that will be a great place to tour or watch a game at, and it also hosts many entertainment performances and musical concerts.
- The Forum: Close to the Los Angeles International Airport and nestled between a selection of stadiums and casinos, the Forum Club is a large capacity indoor venue. With its bold stone columns and intense neon lights, the Forum is a stunning venue that welcomes a range of musicians and other performers.
- The Roxy Theatre: Located on the famous Sunset Blvd, the Roxy welcomes a wide range of indie bands and musicians to its 500-seater venue. Above the venue is On The Rox, a small, exclusive bar that allows an illustrious clientele to enjoy the majesty of this premier venue.
- Whisky A Go Go: Another famed bar on the Sunset Blvd, Whiskey A Go Go has launched the careers of many bands and artists, including No Doubt, Alice Cooper, Van Halen and many more. The small venue also helped to propel the go go dance into popularity. As such, it's a crucial part of LA's musical history and a must-visit for music lovers.
When considering visiting a music venue, you need to consider the type of performance you want to watch.
Whether you want to see a huge band perform at an exhilarating event or a small, intimate gig at a bar, you need to consider the capacity and the type of venue before you select one.
Once you know what sort of event that you want to attend, you can check out the bands and musicians that have booked to play at each venue.
Alternatively, you could see if you can get a tour of the venue, or visit it to buy yourself a drink and enjoy the ambience of the place where so many performers and groups have put on incredible musical performances.
The Venues In LA For Professional Music Makers
Everyone loves watching live music and checking out the latest concerts or music shops, but there's more to consider for professional musicians.
You'll also want to check out the rehearsal spaces and recording studios that you can use to hone your skills in the City Of Angels.
After all, there's a lot of inspiration to be had when making music in Los Angeles, but you need to make sure that you use it wisely.
Thankfully, Pirate has got you covered. We've created top-quality LA rehearsal studios and recording spaces.
Our locations in Los Angeles, at Silver Lake and West Adams, offer professional musicians and bands the chance to take advantage of our cutting-edge equipment and in-house technicians to create fantastic music in LA.
You can find out about our rehearsal spaces, book your session, read the latest music news on our blog, and much more.